GOLDEN OLDIES PART (V)-TANGA SONGS

A TANGA

As a child when I used to visit Delhi from Bulsar (a quaint little town in Gujarat, where I studied in the most well known school : St Joseph’s English Teaching High School till Class XI – {1966 }  ) with my parents during vacations to see our relatives (uncles,aunts etc) or to attend some family functions,I used to love travelling the distance from Delhi Railway Station to our relatives’ house in a “TANGA”- yes that old popular mode of transport in the 50’s and 60’s or so—-a horse driven carriage.The journey was very enjoyable in spite of the cramped space with us all (me,my younger brothers and sisters and parents) plus the luggage etc packed tightly in the front and back seats of the tanga and the tanga-wallah dangerously perched on one side of the vehicle’s main frame with the whip in his hand and his continuous shouting to the passers by to be careful ……The horse’s hoofs made a musical note as they plodded along the cobbled roads.Tic toc,tic toc,tic toc,tic toc,tic toc….or say  ” tabdik, tabdik,tabdik,tabdik,tabdik…….”

Those childhood memories and the musical notes of a horse’s galloping have remained etched in my mind till today.It is really sad to note and know that with the arrival of other better and faster modes of transport the tanga has now become out dated and a hardly few tangas are rarely seen on certain restricted roads of Delhi.The tanga wallahs complain that it has become very difficult to earn a decent livelyhood from this business due to various factors.Leaving aside the controversy,let me now link this memory with some of my favourite golden oldies which have been soulfully  sung and beautifully picturised ( in black and white ) on a tanga.I’ll call them TANGA SONGS.  

(1) :  

The most loveable song which I love singing,listening to and seeing on TV ( on some selected channels which show old films/songs) as well as on Youtube (thanks to the technical marvels of these modern times ) with the help of my son’s laptop is from the old film : “Chhoti Bahen” (1959) Music :Shankar Jaikishan, Lyrics : ??  Lead actors : Balraj Sahani,Nanda,Rehman,Mehmood,Shobha Khote….The song (a duet) has been sung by Lata and Subir Sen.It has been picturised on Mehmood and Shobha Khote (a famous comedy pair of those times) and is my favourite Tanga Song because of its simple words,haunting melody and yes because  it feels utterly good to watch and listen to the galloping noise of the tanga…..tic toc,tic toc,tic toc,tic toc,tic,toc……..The wordings of this golden oldie are as under:

MEHMOOD

Mehmood “Main rangeelaa pyaar kaa raahee,

Door meree manzil,

Shaukh nazar kaa teer toone maaraa,

Dil huaa ghaayal.”

Shobha :”Tere liye hee sambhaal ke rakhaa thaa,

Pyaar bharaa yeh dil,

Tere ishaaron pe chaltaa rahegaa,

O mere katil.”

Mehmood : “Teree raah par jo main ruk gayaa,

Mujhe rahee naa apnee khabar.

Mere saath chal, mere humsafar,

Ab teree meree ek dagar….(2)

Main rangeela pyaar ka raahi ………..

Shobha: “Jo aaj hai woh kabhee na thaa,

Yeh chaman pe ujlaa nikhaar,

Yeh rang hai mere pyaar kaa

Jo khilaa hai ban ke bahaar……..(2)

Main rangeela pyaar ka raahee……………

The song hardly needs any translation.Another plus point of this song is the interspersed laughter of the actors in the song and that adds charm to the song.Yes,before I forget, this tanga has a special metallic bell in the front portion.It is located in the under carriage and can be operated by a foot lever by the driver.The musical bell is a part of the music ( ting…a ling….)  and is focussed quite prominently  a few times in the song. ( I recall having seen this type of bell in a tanga in Bombay long long ago but this arrangement has never been seen by me in Delhi’s tangas). The song culminates with the tanga fading away into the horizon with the galloping noises remaining in your ears and Mehmood urging the horse to speed on ! Simply enchanting !! See it and E..N…J…O …Y  !!  

SHOBHA KHOTE

(2):

The second song that I recall is from the film “Naya Daur” (1957-Black and White) (In August 2007 a coloured version was also released but somehow I prefer the B&W version as the scenes are etched in my mind from that era ).The singers are :Asha Bhonsle and Md Rafi.Lyrics by Sahir Ludhianvi ,Music by O P Nayyar.    The words of the song are like this : 

DILIP KUMAR

” MANG KE SAATH TUMHARA,  

 MAINE MAANG LIYA SANSAAR   

MANG KE SAATH TUMHARA……  

DIL KAHE DILDAAR MILLA

HUM KAHEIN HUMEIN PYAAR MILLA

PYAAR MILLA,HUMEIN YAAR MILLA

EK NAYA SANSAR MILLA

AAS MILLEE,ARMAAN MILLA,

JEENE KA SAMAAN MILLA,

MILL GAYA EK SAHARA.

MANG KE SAATH TUMHARA………  

DIL JAWAN AUR RUT HASEEN

CHAL YOON HI LE CHAL KAHEEN

TOO CHAHE LE CHAL KAHEEN

TUJH PE HAI MUJH KO YAKEEN.

JAAN BHI TOO HAI,

DIL BHI TOOHEE

RAAH BHI TOO MANZIL BHI TOOHEE

AUR TOOHI AAS KA TAARA.

MANG KE SAATH TUMHARA……….  

The song is beautifully picturised on Dilip Kumar and Vyjantimala.They complement each other and their shy smiles and glances speak volumes about their easy camraderie and comfort in each other’s company.SUPERB !!   

I feel, a small peek into the storyline of this super hit movie of those times,here,will not be out of place :  

The film is set in post-independence India where industrialization is slowly creeping in. The focus is on Tangawallahs who earn their livelihood transporting people from place to place on Tangas (horse – carts). Their livelihood is threatened when the son of a rich landlord (Jeevan) begins operating a bus service in the town,which he subsidizes heavily with the sole intention of first driving the Tangawallahs out of the down and then making profits. Dilip Kumar plays one of the Tangawallahs who petitions the landlord over this injustice.Then, Jeevan’s character proposes a competition to decide which service is the best – The Bus or the Tanga? It is then decided that there will be a race between both the vehicles. The Bus driven mechanically and the Tanga driven by Dilip Kumar’s character. If the Bus wins the race, the Tangawallahs would not complain further and if the Tanga wins, the Bus service would stop. This competition was a farce from the start itself since nobody could even dream that a horse cart could beat a machine operated bus. Dilip Kumar, however, accepts the challenge to everybody’s surprise. His logic is that they would anyway be driven to starvation if the Bus Service continues. This race at least gives them an opportunity to try and do something. However, the rest of the Tangawallahs do not share his hope. They blame him for his foolishness. In the end, he is left alone with nobody’s support except his sweetheart, played by Vyjyanti Mala. As the movie unravels,a hopeless situation begins to turn around because of the way the people come together. Mishap after mishap occurs but nothing can deter the determined. The highlight of the film is definitely the heart stopping final race where the underdog wins and how? It is really a treat to watch. The central idea is thus : Man versus Machine.  

The song has a nice beat with the horse’s tic toc,tic toc…captivating the listeners besides the good poetry of this golden oldie.Watch it and then re-act.OK ? 

Vayjantimala

(3):

The third song that I recall, is a song sung by Mohammad Rafi.It goes something like this :               

“GHODA PISHORI MERA,        

TANGA LAHORI MERA,        

AAO MIYAAN JI, AAO LALA,         

MAIN HOON ALBELA TAANGEWALLA…..(2)         

GHODA PISHORI MERA,        

TANGA LAHORI MERA…………”    

The song is from a film titled :”Pyaar Ka Bandhan” (1963) ,lyrics by Sahir Ludhianvi,and lovely music by Ravi. I tried to find out the full lyrics of this song from various sites on the internet but I was not lucky enough.Perhaps readers can help me.I recall from memory that the tangawallah asks the girl passing by to sit in the tanga or she will get tired walking.He also advises her to take shelter under the canopy of the tanga or her complexion will become dark ( “gulabi rang kaala ho jayega” ).Anyway, this galloping song is another delightful melody which transports me back to those childhood days.

Tic toc,tic toc,……tabdik, tabdik…….Enjoy it and let me have your response.    

I am of the view that perhaps our grand children may never see a tanga or hitch a ride in one.Hopefully, they may at best, see a tanga in a museum–preserved as a show-piece under the heading of “India’s Heritage—A TANGA” (a horse driven carriage used for transportation of people and goods in 1940s to 1980s !! ) They will surely have missed an unforgettable experience in life.What do you say dear readers ? 

I’ll also be posting this piece on my blog : “Broca’s doodle pad” with pictures of a tanga and some other relevent visuals.Those interested, can enjoy the visuals there.HAPPY RIDING ON A TANGA.Safe Journey…….  

– J S BROCA  

New Delhi

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30 Responses to GOLDEN OLDIES PART (V)-TANGA SONGS

  1. Dr Pooja G Bhuyar, Bijapur says:

    Jitoo Sir,
    I also went nostalgic remembering TANGA…I used to ask my mother why he hits the horse so hard? Does it not hurt the horse? I used to yearn to look at the horse’s face if its crying after he hit the horse…Sir, I think the song, Musafir hoon yaaron, na ghar hai na thikana,mujhe chalte jaana hai…… which features Jitendra has been shot in a Tanga….And I like that song….Lets keep continuing this melodious saga….Best wishes….

  2. Lina Mistry/Tandel says:

    Dear Brocaji, I was only six when I moved to the States, and trying to remember certain things in my early childhood is harder than it looks. But I do remember the tanga rides in Bahruj Gujarat. Thank you for the memories of years lost to me. Regards,

  3. Dear Dr Poojaji, thanks for your prompt feedback. Yes you are right. The song mentioned by you was indeed picturised on Jeetendra on a Tonga. I too recalled it since you mentioned it. However it is comparatively a newer song when seen in light of the golden oldies touched by me in this posting. Your sensitive side of trying to see if the whipped horse was crying or not, is really appreciated. Yes animals need to be treated with kindness and love by us. PETA is doing a good service in this field.

  4. Dear Linaji
    Thanks for your appreciation. You have mentioned a place called Bharuj in Gujarat. If I am not mistaken it should be “Bharuch” (which is near Surat) and is famous for the Golden Bridge on river Narmada. It is also well known for its “Khari Seeng” or salted peanuts which is sold on the railway station as well as in the coaches of railway trains passing through Bharuch and I have seen passengers buying it in large quantities. It is very tasty. I last visited Bharuch in 1985-1986 on official work when I was posted in Ahmedabad by my Bank.and that taste still lingers in my mouth. IS THAT CORRECT ABOUT BHARUCH ?? I hope it is. All the best.

  5. Lina Mistry/Tandel says:

    Dear Brocaji, yes correction to the spelling of Bharuch India. It is close to Surat. My father was a professor at the politech college back in 1968-1971. Regards,

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